The Best Books of the Year

... are the ones I read.

Yet I like to stay informed about what other folks are reading. It's helpful to check out the Publishers Weekly list.

Even so, I rarely choose a current bestseller. I prefer to read away from the buzz and fuss of the moment. Funny, but it seems more peaceful to me. I was the same way with my vote this year. I enjoyed the momentous occasion, knowing that I had participated alone and quietly, voting by mail.

I love classics, children's books, fantasy, literary fiction, memoir, poetry, spirituality, inspiration, young adult books. And here's one of the most freeing bits of advice I've come across as a reader:

You don't have to finish the book. If you lose interest, if it doesn't charm you, ask yourself why this is. Apply the lesson to your own writing, if you can. Then put the book back on the shelf and choose another.

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